Get ready to pay a premium for parking

Village officials nearly doubled fees for many parking permits

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By Robert J. Lifka

Contributing Reporter

Forest Park officials took a big step Nov. 27 toward closing a budget shortfall of approximately $1 million, voting unanimously at the village council meeting that evening to increase fees for parking permits and parking tickets.

The action implements two of many recommendations made at a budget workshop in October. Other recommendations include imposing a sewer tax, increasing the garbage fee and charging for parking on Madison Street and Roosevelt Road.

The cost of day parking permits will increase from $20 to $35 per month and from $55 to $100 per quarter. The cost of night parking permits will increase from $25 to $40 per month and from $70 to $115 per quarter.  The cost of combination day-night parking permits will increase from $40 to $65 per month and $$115 to $185. 

Those 65 and older will still receive a reduced rate but their cost will increase from $10 to $15 per month and from $25 to $40 per quarter for day permits; from $20 to $30 per month and $55 to $85 per quarter for night permits; and from $30 to $50 per month and $85 to $145 per quarter for combination day-night permits.

In another change, permits are now only available at the Village Clerk's Office.

Village Administrator Tim Gillian said village officials estimate the changes will lead to increased revenue of $170,000 per year.

The general parking ticket fine will increase from $30 to $40 and the fines for parking in a no-parking zone between 2 and 5 a.m. will increase from $30 to $50 and parking at an expired meter will increase from $20 to $30.

Those who do not pay their fines before hearing dates also will have to pay more.

The general fine will increase from $50 to $80 for failing to pay before a second hearing; from $100 to $120 for failing to pay before a third hearing; and from $150 to $200 for failing to appear at a third hearing. 

The fine for parking in a no-parking zone between 2 and 5 a.m. will increase from $50 to $125 for failing to pay before a second hearing; from $100 to $150 for failing to pay before a third hearing; and from $150 to $250 for failing to appear at a third hearing.

The fine for failing to appear at a third hearing on an expired meter ticket will increase from $125 to $150 but the fine for failing to pay before a second hearing will remain $50 and the fine for failing to pay before a third hearing will remain $100.

The changes do not affect the fine for parking opposite a fire door or in a fire lane; for parking in a handicapped zone; or condition of motor vehicle violation or removal or relocation of a vehicle.  

Gillian said village officials estimate the parking ticket fine increases would generate an additional $250,000 per year.

He also said he estimates the changes will take effect Jan. 1.

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